By Diana Dobson
Image Credit: Cheleken Photography
Daniel Blundell had every belief in Lavello taking out the Dunstan Horsefeeds and EquiFibre Horse grand Prix at the Alltech Grand Prix Showjumping Show at Woodhill Sands today.
As it was, he and Lavello were the only clear in the opening round to give them the win.
“I thought it was a nice course out there,” said the 27-year-old who moved to Auckland just four months ago. “There was one tricky line but once we got through that it was fine. Lavello is so scopey he had no trouble with it. He is feeling a million bucks at the moment.”
Blundell was also third on U Can Dance NZPH in the same class.
“She won the 1.35m yesterday and just jumped really well. She felt amazing.”
Blundell had contemplated putting her in foal but her sister Athena NZPH is out with an abscess so the plan was put on hold for a bit . . . and she’s been on form ever since.
“It made me train her a bit differently and she is jumping a lot better as a result.”
Blundell had a busy show at Woodhill Sands but was quickly heading to the airport to fly south to Christchurch for his other passion – his work in television and film.
Elmo Jackson (Auckland) and Dr Feel Good placed second in the Grand Prix after a six fault first round, and he was also fifth aboard Next with 12 faults. Visiting Australian rider Gabi Kuna and Flaire placed fourth.
Katie Bridgeman (Auckland) and Mr McCloud took out the Country TV Pony Grand Prix after a nail-biting jump-off against Tyla Hackett (Waiuku) and The Dreamer. Bridgeman was double clear in 43.32 seconds, with Hackett taking a rail to finish on four faults in 43.65.
It was the first weekend competitors at Woodhill Sands have been able to compete on the grass arena – much to their delight.
Courses were designed by Barry Manson (Southland).
Dunstan Horsefeeds & EquiFibre Horse Grand Prix: Daniel Blundell (Auckland) Lavello 1, Elmo Jackson (Auckland) Dr Feel Good 2, Daniel Blundell (Auckland) U Can Dance NZPH 3, Gabi Kuna (Australia) Flaire 4, Elmo Jackson (Auckland) Next 5, Paula Mussen (Pukekohe) KK Tane Mahuta 6.
Country TV Pony Grand Prix: Katie Bridgeman (Auckland) Mr McCloud 1, Tyla Hackett (Waiuku) The Dreamer 2, Brett Horsburgh (Cambridge) Showtym Endeavour 3, Natalia Lammers (Hikurangi) Airborne Magic 4, Crystal Hackett (Waiuku) Cracklin Rose 5.
FMG Young Rider Series: Todd Magner (Waikato) Awatuna Jonesy 1, Sharnaye Lammers (Hikurangi) Romeo NZPH 2, Elmo Jackson (Auckland) Next 3, Laura Lush (Auckland) Antix 4, Emelia Forsyth (Auckland) Leeston Eagle 5, Keean Cooper (Te Kauwhata) Amarula MVNZ 6.
Dunstan Horsefeeds & EquiFibre Pro Amateur Rider Series: Emma Gaze (Cambridge) Woodland Bug 1, Karen Riddle (Rotorua) LC Telepathy 2, Emma Gaze (Cambridge) Woodland Firebug 3, Natasha Imeson (Northland) Absolute NZPH 4, Rebecca Roigard (Auckland) Gazelle II 5, Bob Bleakley (Cambridge) Airthrey Resolution 6.
Caledonian Holdings Amateur Rider Series: Julia Johnston (Tuakau) Starlight Dalaman 1, Nicola Smith (Cambridge) Verdant Blue NZPH 2, Amy Gravatt (Whangarei) Dubrovnik 3, Kimberley Knight (Auckland) Louis Lamont 4, Joanna Bullock (Warkworth) Weiti Vienna 5, Chloe van den Boorn (Auckland) Mirrabella Piper 6.
Dunstan Horsefeeds & EquiFibre Junior Rider Series: Jessica Collinson (Papakura) Bunny Hop 1, Keeva McCambridge (Kumeu) La Princesse de Babylone 2, Tyla Hackett (Waiuku) Gin 3, Samantha Maguire (Tuakau) Starlight Daytona 4, Keean Cooper (Te Kauwhata) Pythia 5, Vicky Browne-Cole (Waiuku) Eli 6.
Purepine Shavings Seven-Year-Old Series: Gabi Kuna (Australia) Flaire 1, Victoria Rattray (Mangatangi) Larmani MVNZ 2, Alannah Jackson (Cambridge) Capbella 3, Sarah Worker (Auckland) Remarkable 4.
Mitavite Six-Year-Old Series: Rosie Commons (Auckland) Lotte 1.
Northern Regional Alltech Horse Grand Prix Super Series: Sharnaye Lammers (Hikurangi) Romeo NZPH 1, Natasha Imeson (Hikurangi) Absolute NZPH 2, Todd Magner (Waikato) Awatuna Jonesy 3, Joshua Barker (Morrinsville) Lanius GNZ 4, Daniel Blundell (Auckland) Redcliffs Armani RF 6.
Northern Regional Fiber Fresh Pony Grand Prix Super Series: Keira Page (Waiheke Island) Redcliffs Ted 1, Maddison Greatorex (Northland) Spotified 2, Charlotte Treneary (Waitemata) Kabo Pongo 3, Kendall Turner (Waikato) El Hidalgo 4, Liv Teixeira (Auckland) Spot the Difference 5.